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Re: Removing ChangeLog [Was Re: 2.26 hard freeze status]

On Thu, 3 Aug 2017, Siddhesh Poyarekar wrote:

> To be clear, what is currently blocking us from not using the ChangeLog
> file?  A reliable way to attribute authors and not just committers?  We
> could start using the Signed-off-by mechanism for it if that works.  As
> for bugs (since that is one good piece of information in the commit too)
> we could use another Fixes: tag in the commit text.  Anything else?

We need at least one of:

* A change to the GNU Coding Standards to stop requiring the ChangeLog 
format to be used in specified circumstances.  Join the discussion on 
bug-standards if interested in that.  This might need to be accompanied by 
e.g. appropriate conventions for crediting multi-author patches and for 
recording corrections to attribution information for commits without 
--author, or for other important corrections to commit messages (e.g. by 
subsequent empty commits whose commit messages state the corrections), and 
by technical measures such as shipping commit messages in tarballs or 
having versions of tarballs with the version history, if that's what ends 
up in the GNU Coding Standards.

* An agreed format for including ChangeLog-format information in commit 
messages so that a ChangeLog can be generated automatically (again, 
allowing for corrections), appropriate scripts to include that generated 
ChangeLog in releases, and git hooks to ensure the format is properly 

In both cases, more pre-commit review of commit messages than at present 
would be needed, and stronger requirements on having substantive commit 

Joseph S. Myers

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